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Tue June 8 2021 19:24:18

Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dearly

By: Reader

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Dear Ina, 
I have followed your blog for many years. I was wondering what you have heard about the new Amazon sports category requirements for autograph certifications. 

The deadline for this was May 23.... still more than half the seller are in non-compliance. I am one of the sellers who got the memo and actually complied by pulling down all the items that were not certified by the authentication houses they require. 

This meant I eliminated over 1,000 items from the site, leaving me around 300 items presently. I also went about getting items certified and took the small amount of time allotted (2 months) to do as much as I could so I would be in compliance. 

I see 70% of the other sellers are still on Amazon with their fake item or their items that are not certified except by them (which is not allowed). I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THIS. 

I also noticed that since they indicated there would be this requirement (back in late March), my sales dropped to almost nothing. AM I BEING PUNISHED? Why is this happening? Others are listed illegally and selling like crazy? When will Amazon enforce their requirements? The deadline was May 23 - 2 weeks ago. Do you have any news on this? 

I feel desperate as I have relied on Amazon for my income for years. I really feel this is an injustice and unethical to people like me who do everything right. 

ANY SUGGESTIONS? I would appreciate any help you can provide to understand what it up at Amazon ... 
Thank you, 
R.

Note from the Editor: In March, we wrote about the new mandate in which Amazon informed sellers they would no longer be allowed to self-authenticate sports collectibles. Instead, Amazon now requires sellers to have their sports collectibles authenticated and/or graded by one of its authorized third-party service providers.

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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Jun 9 09:33:41 2021

Welcome to selling on someone else's site, where one day you will be counting great amounts of cash and with the flip of a switch you will be wondering where your sales went.  I've seen it time and time again on multiple sites.  These sites won't tell you what the issue is.  

You jump through hoop after hoop for years on end, complying with their constant changes, updates and demands.  The lack of transparency from these sites as it relates to what it takes to actually grow your business on those sites is non-existent, at least for the small guys.  You are likely tethered by algorithms and an ecommerce caste system and maybe even selling limits.  If you aren't a big enterprise seller on these sites you are more akin to a gnat to them.

If at all possible, create your web site and promote, promote, and promote.  Sorry that I don't have an answer for you, but I would imagine few people do unless they have someone on the inside who can help.

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: l.l. This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 9 16:01:28 2021

hello REXFORD, yes you are right.............. i had my own site 18 yrs ago through one of the popular hosting services of the time.  i had over a thousand items listed on that site.  one day my site was eliminated off the service with no explanation.  i never really found out what happened.  eventually the service that hosted it was gone too.  all that work wasted, all that time gone - building and driving people to it (which was much harder back then) was over.  i believed someone else wanted my catchy domain name, which easily came up in search engines.  i let everything go on my website as i did not have the 1000's of hours to devote to it and rebuild, also it was so damaging to me personally i just could not put myself through it again. so you see you are never really protected lol.  
since day one as a business owner,  i was very diversified and ran trade shows every weekend at different shopping malls, i had a retail store with a partner, and i was on ebay.   as of about 12 yrs. ago i dropped the trade shows and my mall store, i went completely online, selling on at least 5 sites at any given time.  i also opened up a few other lines of business to sell that were related but not sports memorabilia.  my boyfriend did purchase me a web domain as a gift, about 2 yrs. ago,  it may be time to go full bore on that.  THANKS FOR YOU ADVICE!

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: l.l. This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 9 16:28:20 2021

REXFORD...  we both know online sites are a necessary evil and they are going to screw with you regularly, i expect it.  my letter to ina was mostly about rule enforcement, doing what you say your going to do and putting everyone on a fair playing field.  if amazon says something has to be done by may 23..... then does nothing to the non-compliant it is a case of fairness, ethics, policing the site, crying wolf.  if you say it, MEAN IT and do what  you say your going to do.  DO IT NOW!

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: EyeFlipDaily This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 10 00:12:26 2021

more reasons why you should never put all your eggs in one basket ... there are actual marketplaces that are designed for sports memorabilia as well as twitter, reddit, & online forums

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 10 06:33:08 2021

Suggestions?

Your point needs to be expressed to - via - wherever and to whomever at Amazon will be most likely to be compelled to respond. Facebook’s conduit seems to be a good start. Actually, your letter here was, it’s just not likely to draw one out of their den of inequity to respond here.

Even money says you may at best receive a canned reply, more likely a general response that defers to the ‘volume’ for which enforcement applies being too great to have met their self declared ‘deadline’. They’ll be sure to thank you for your part and spew some reassurance that one of their specialist teams (who somehow create in an environment with no means of outside contact to the rest of the planet) will hop skippity right on it.

As you may know, they already have a handful for for ‘inexplicable sales slumps’ with a side order of dismissal as ‘coincidence’ any evidence that begs investigating probable cause.

Unfortunately, this has been an ongoing ‘thing’ with every venue since their respective ‘strategic’ acquiescences (comply as I say, not as I - or any of our more corpulent Mandarin speaking demand satiaters comply). And it’s not about ‘safety’, or ‘trust’ or any other of their unicorn and rainbow colors they try to spray paint it with, like their latest spew about support for ‘small business’. It’s about monetizing whatever aspect of the potential sale (whether you make it or not) that they can.

And who’s to say the ‘authenticators’ don’t PRC a bit themselves?

Maybe you can find some solace in this..doing the thing you believe to be right while those around you lollygag says a lot more about trustworthiness than any authenticator can endorse to convey. And that would serve you well if you decide to let these ‘bezos’ cavort in their circus how they like while you take your customers to another tent.

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: BMTOKC This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 10 08:57:24 2021

I WAS THINKING THE SAME THING AS SNAPPED. YOU NEED TO BE CRYING TO AMAZON AND ESCALATE IT AS HIGH AS YOU CAN. HERE, LET ME PAT YA ON THE BACK. PO BABY. FEEL BETTER?

IT'S A CRUEL WORLD AND JUST KEEPS GETTIN WORSE. I'VE BEEN AT IT FULL TIME SINCE 1970, YES 1970.

NOW INSTEAD OF BITCHING ABOUT IT, I AM OLD AND JUST SITTING AROUNDS WAITING TO DIE. I CAN GO ANYTIME.

NOONE CARES, INCLUDING ME.

LIFE WILL GO ON.

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: lisapar This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 10 09:09:47 2021

I've been selling online since 2003.  Went from top Seller on Ebay to the bottom.  Opened my own website, then Google changed their search algorithms (pay to play), and it cost me $000,000 just to stay on the front page of searches.  So then I moved to Amazon (while keeping Ebay and my website).  3 eggs, 3 baskets.  

The one thing I've learned from 18 years as an internet retailer is this:  No one platform remains constant.  As if small sellers are all climbing the same greased pole...one day you're on top, the next day at the bottom.

I remember years ago my Rep with my website hosting platform told me we are moving towards a one-world e-market.  With Amazon gulping up all the space, it's looking like this prediction is coming true.  Amazon uses its own platform to collect product data -- then competes against its own seller base.  I hope the anti-trust lawsuit will break up AMZ's monopoly, else there will be no more room for small internet sellers.

E-commerce is constantly evolving, and changing by the minute.  If you don't keep on top of the changes, and develop ways "around the system", you will slide to the bottom of that pole.

Perminate Link for Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea   Amazon Seller Says Efforts to Comply Cost Them Dea

by: l.l. This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 10 19:13:08 2021

what the web cannot compete against is a brick and mortar store. no one can hide it, make is invalid, put other businesses in front of it, etc.  brick and mortars do more business and last longer too!!!  the only thing  you have to worry about is 1 or 2 competitors at the most in your local area.  food for thought.



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